Lagana is an award winning artist and illustrator. Her prints and photographs have formed one woman shows in the U.S. and in Thailand. Her knitted art has shown in the nationally juried Ringling Craft Show in Sarasota, Florida. Lagana's works are in collections around the world, including those of U.S. ambassadors, Thai prime ministers, and actor, John Carradine. She was chosen to illustrate a broad sheet commemorating the installation of National Poet Laureate Howard Nemerov.
Lagana Design Studios: linoleum block prints and serigraphs: visions, abstracts, landscapes, fantasies and scenes of Asia, in mild colors, wild colors, and black & white, from small to enormous. . . . photographs of Thailand. . . wild cable and intarsia sweaters, hand knitted, capes, hangings, bedspreads, greeting cards, plexi and wood furniture. Lagana is currently finishing a low upkeep, alternative luxury house of her design which will be displayed on this website. The brilliant colors & rhythms of Southeast Asia have excited Lagana's block prints and lyrical fantasies. Her dramatic black & white prints and photographs are reflected in her intricate illustrations for books and greeting cards. Lagana has knitted her striking motifs and colors into wall hangings & clothing.
Lagana completed her undergraduate work at Eckerd College while living in Washington, D.C. & studying Thai. At Eckerd she learned printmaking from Robert Hodgell, design integrity from Jim Crane, and drawing from Margaret Rigg. (a wonderful combination of teachers & skills!) After graduating in 1969, she flew to Thailand to be a Buddhist nun. (likely the first American Thai Buddhist nun) on the recommendation of her Zen teacher, Roshi Philip Kapleau. Lagana spent a year in a nunnery alongside a tropical canal, then left the orders to live in the ricelands.
Lagana met her husband while visiting her nun mentor's family farm on a canal in the ricelands in 1970. After marrying she and her husband moved to Bangkok and then in 1974 to the States where they purchased an historical house & renovated it to become Lagana Galleries & Design Studios.
The gallery featured the works of Calligraphers, Ruth Pettis & Margaret Rigg; potter Ted Camp, printmaker, sculptor, painter, potter, Robert Hodgell alongside with children's art, dolls, doll houses and Lagana's work.
All that time Lagana was enjoying their two children, home schooling them, & taxiing them to their various classes & activities. One is now a Modern dancer who may opt to be a mathematician. The twelve year old plays both piano and violin with real talent, but is a computer wiz & wishes to be an engineer. Lagana doesn't think they or she or anyone were born with exceptional talent. Rather that babies are born with an interest and an adult takes them up on it. Her father never gave gifts but they were inspirations after whatever activity he'd noticed his kids liked. He didn't give coloring books, he gave finely crafted cards with outlines of beautiful flowers & birds. He went out for his paper one Sunday morning & came back with a set of wood chisels and proceeded to teach his daughter woodworking because she had expressed interest in wood. So in trying to keep the tradition, when her two year old son used the word, "song" instead of "sound" and reported that the washing machine had a song but the truck outside did not, she put him in music. When her daughter leaped off tables & made up dances, Lagana started her in gymnastics & dance. Lagana's favorite quip is from a study that concluded that the main factor determining the success of a child at any activity was the willingness of a parent to drive them there!
From the late 70's through the late 80's Lagana illustrated for magazines & books for Konglomerati Press, and attending craft shows with her knitted art. In the 90's, she branched into doll costuming and repair, all the while working on her ideas for an innovatively simple yet elegant dwelling, her memoir, poetry, and as yet unpublished children's books. The house is now a reality and is shown in this website. Her poems, The Roots of Life the Trees of Love, and her memoir, The Last Real Death, in nature, in the Thai farm canal lands, in life, in Buddhism, are published as eBooks on Amazon and as paper books sold on Etsy/laganadesign.
As one dance teacher said, "The more you dance, the more you can dance!"
SHOWS, PRIZES, & PUBLISHED WORKS: (later please)